With the outbreak of the Great War in August 1914, Canada responded with great enthusiasm, despite a small population and minuscule “Permanent Active Militia” of only 3,100 men. Patriotism not only propelled enlistment- eventually 600,000 men served in uniform- but also in offers from philanthropists to help fund units or weaponry. One such person was Raymond Brutinel, a self-made millionaire, who offered the Minister of Militia a company of armoured cars, which he secured from the American Autocar company. These trucks were initially coupled with Colt machine guns (as Vickers were not immediately available). The truck chassis was plated with 9mm armour plate.
The Canadian Automobile Machine Gun Brigade was formed in 1914, and shipped overseas as part of the Canadian Expeditionary Force. By the time the unit arrived overseas, the front lines had settled down into the static trench warfare that has become synonymous with that conflict. The Autocars, much like the cavalry, were limited to the back lines, mostly in patrol duties.
That all changed with the German offensive, Operation Michael, in March 1918. With the German storm troopers shattering the Allies front lines, the Autocars were suddenly essential in rapidly responding to threats on the open landscape. When the Germans faltered, the Allies struck back. General Arthur Currie, commander of the Canadian Corps, was the spearhead, as he drove his troops forward aggressively in the “Last 100 Days”. The Corps recapturing the symbolic city of Mons before the Germans sought an armistice. Although vulnerable – being open topped and having no off-road ability – the armament of twin Vickers MMG, coupled with a front mounted Lewis gun, with the ability to travel rapidly on the roads, demonstrated the value of mobile fire support.
The end of the war meant the end of armoured vehicles in the Canadian Army; no armoured vehicles would be in service again until the 1930s, but somehow one Autocar survived. It was refurbished and is again operable (most recently in the 2018 100th anniversary commemoration parade in Mons). It can currently be seen at the Canadian War Museum in Ottawa.
This .stl pack is for resin printing only. The .stl pack includes the Vickers MMGs, a front mounted Lewis gun that dry fits into a front mount (making it an optional armament), A basic driver figure .stl is included, as well as a separate steering wheel .stl should you choose your own driver figure.
Recently we have seen new World War 1 themed 28mm game rule sets being released– e.g. “Scout Out” and “Blood & Valor”, as well as several unofficial WW1 Bolt Action rulesets. While the trench themed battle is what first springs to mind in WW1 gaming, the Last Hundred Days was a period of mobile warfare which has more in common with the 1939 style of warfare than that of 1916.
The “Bolt Action speak”, I would suggest the point cost (as regular) of the Autocar would be
- Wheeled armoured carrier +7 50 points
- Crew of 4
- Open topped – 5
- 2 x Pintle MMGS, side and rear arcs 40
- Recce 10
Total 95 points
- (optional) pintle LMG front arc +10 points